Mohammed Zubair moves SC, seeks quashing of six UP FIRs
Journalist and fact-checker Mohammed Zubair has moved to the Supreme Court with a plea to quash all six UP Police FIRs against him. Cases have been registered against him in Sitapur, Lakhimpur Kheri, Hathras, Ghaziabad, and Muzzaffarnagar. A Delhi court on Thursday also reserved the order on Zubair's bail plea in the case registered against him by Delhi Police.
- The Alt News co-founder was arrested by the Delhi Police in June and was sent to 14-day judicial custody.
- He was then booked by Sitapur Police for calling Sant Bajrang Muni, Yati Narsinghanand, and Swami Anand Swarup "hate-mongers."
- While he was granted interim bail in the case, a Lakhimpur Kheri court later sentenced him to another 14 days in jail.
Along with UP Police FIRs, Zubair's plea in the Supreme Court also challenges the formation of a Special Investigation Team (SIT). The SIT was formed on Tuesday and will be headed by IGP (Prisons) Preetinder Singh. Zubair has also asked for interim bail in all the cases. Alternatively, he has requested for all UP cases to be clubbed with his Delhi Police case.
The Delhi court hearing Zubair's case has reserved its order on the bail plea until Friday. Representing Zubair, senior advocate Vrinda Grover said that since all investigation is electronic, the fact-checker does not need to be kept in custody. Special Prosecutor Atul Srivastava informed the court that Rs. 56 lakh was transferred to Zubair's account through Razorpay.
The Delhi Police arrested Zubair on June 28 for a tweet posted by him in 2018. The arrest was made on a complaint by a right-wing social media account. Zubair's tweet had a still from the 1988 film Kisi Se Na Kehna, which the complainant said hurt religious sentiments. A case was registered against him under IPC sections 153A and 295.